May Release Recommendations
By Natalie MacLean
May 10: Highly Recommended White Wines
529941 Cave Springs Chardonnay 1999, Niagara $35: one of Canada's best chards -- balanced and lovely, not too oaky, good fruit.
704395 Thornbury Chardonnay 'Steve Bird' 2000, New Zealand $24.95: yahoo! double yum -- silky, bursting with tree fruit.
714295 Waimea Sauvignon Blanc 2002, New Zealand $20.95: tasty herbal quality, good acidity, excellent food wine.
738997 Palliser Estate Sauvignon Blanc 'Pencarrow' 2002, New Zealand $17.95: major lawnmowers, very herbal, great attack.
730838 Weingut Wwe Dr H Thanisch Riesling Kabinett 1998, Germany $19.95: elegant floral, mineral riesling without too much acidity, touch sweet which makes it even nicer
955823 Domanenweingut Schloss Schonborn Riesling Spatlese 1990, Germany $20.95: names like this don't exactly roll off the North American tongue but they keep German reisling prices low. Anyway, let's drink up -- another gorgeous floral, mineral white with great acid balance. Favourite White Wine
May 10: Highly Recommended Red Wines
573212 Lakeview Cellars Meritage 2000, Niagara $19.95: full-bodied red with lots of oak and stuffing, terrific!
963330 Monterra Cabernet Savignon 2000, California $23.95: zinfandel-ish with those brambleberries and other wild blue and black berries, yum.
431999 Milburn Park Cabernet Sauvignon 2001, Australia $12.95: here's your summer party wine, barbecue wine, I'm-by-myself-but-I-want-a-glass-of-wine wine. Ripe, easy drinking, no astro-physics: just beautiful fruit simplicity. Buy by the case while it lasts. Best Value Red
567933 Amberton Shiraz 2000, Australia $17.95: ripe red fruit, medium-bodied.
535104 St Hallet 'Blackwell' Shiraz 1999, Australia $28.95: one of my favourite shiraz producers, terrific rendition here.
743989 Chapel Hill Shiraz 1998, Australia $20.90: the LCBO's Wine of the Month, nice chcolate and mint action.
478727 Bodega Catena Zapata Malbec 2000, Argentina $22.95: looking to try a completely new wine and grape, here you go: raspberries and blackberries.
972349 Chateau Andron-Blanquet 2000, Bordeaux $34.95: needs aging, tannins still a little furry but goregous fruit will carry through for years.
972802 Chateau Lestage 2000, Bordeaux $32.95: 90-93 by the Wine Enthusiast, needs aging, dark chocolate and currant
935718 Le Bahans du Chateau Haut-Brion 2000, Bordeaux $99.95: second wine of Chateau Haut-Brion, gorgeous, could almost drink it now, but in 3-5 years it will be spectacular
944959 Farraton Crozes-Ermitage 1999, Rhone $29.95: lovely cedar, Old World rustic charm, cherries
988667 Domaine de Mourchon Seguret 2000, Rhone $20.95: Old World shiraz, with cedar and plums, wow.
972042 Carlo Pellegrino 'Ulysse' 2000, Sicily, Italy $15.95: juicy, delicious ripe red fruit.
969741 Montelvini 'El Zuiter' Rosso 1999, Veneto, Italy $19.95: if you love oak and some fruit on the side.
May 24: Highly Recommended White Wines
962886 La Crema Chardonnay 2000, California $28.95: lovely well-balanced chardonnay. Also in the half bottle: $15.70, product # 728352.
957407 Coopers Creek Sauvignon Blanc 2002, New Zealand $16.95: lots of lawnmowers humming, nice herbal acidity.
701540 Bouchard Finlayson Sauvignon Blanc 2002, South Africa $15.95: another great SB!
983155 La Riojana Coop Torrontes 2002, Argentina $10.95: a simple party wine that will go down well with burgs and dogs. Best Value White Wine
977462 Weingut Mades Riesling Spatlese 1995, Germany $21.95: extra juicy, floral and my kind of wonderful!
May 24: Highly Recommended Red Wines
500447 Colio Estate Merlot Reserve 2000, Lake Erie Shore, Ontario $19.95: Carlos Negri makes gorgeous red wines -- also try his cab franc! deep dark chocolate and black plums
964189 Arrowood Merlot 1999, Sonoma, California $66.95: it may be pricey but it's a stunner: it's got everything plus the ineffable. Favourite Red Wine
457986 Leasingham 'Classic Clare' Shiraz 1999, Australia $59.95: awesome, shiraz to the ten factor
980631 St Hallet 'Faith' Shiraz 2001, Australia $21.95: when you want shiraz cubed at half the price, this one is terrific.
942078 Chateau Palmer 'Alter Ego' 2000, Bordeaux $85: we had this wine at Signatures restauarnt in the Cordon Bleu School in Ottawa and after being decanted, it was awesome even if we were robbing the oak cradle -- can be aged 5 years+.
983288 Domaine Cheysson Chiroubles 2001, Beaujolais $17.95: no wimpy beaujolais this -- medium-bodied raspberries and cherries, divine.
953042 La Cave des Vign Gigondas 2000, Rhone $22.95: Wine Spectator 93, gorgeous, needs aging, plenty of fruit.
981399 Spinelli Montepulciano d'Abruzzo 2000, Italy $11.90: your red party wine, a touch tannic, but nothing a few hours in the bathtub or similarly wide decanter will soften.
717306 Empson Merlot 2001, Italy $13.95: easy-drinking, smooth merlot with dark fruit
964866 Vini Saladina Pilastri Rosso Piceno 2001, Italy $17.95: organic, but buy it for taste alone -- chocolate and ripe fruit
977272 Cantina Gattavecchi Vino Nobile di Montepulciano Riserva 1997, Italy $32.95: leather, chocolate, dried plums
559526 Ferreira 'Vinha Grande' 1999, Portugal $16.95: dark brooding wine, the James Dean of Portugese wine